Challenging stigma and discrimination, attitudes and laws that undermine human rights, including on grounds of gender or sexual orientation of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) individuals
Challenging stigma and discrimination
We support groups working to challenge stigma and discrimination experienced by individuals on the basis of gender identity, age, sexual orientation, or sexual and reproductive health status. There are many factors that give rise to the exclusion of those seen to be ‘different’, and those seen not to conform to dominant societal norms and behaviours. Being excluded from decision-making affects the lives of these individuals, often leading to isolation, marginalisation and violence.
Stigma and discrimination is complex, often characterised by the interplay of many stigmas operating at once; it is also widespread, infiltrating many aspects of an individual’s life at different times. It perpetuates poverty and is perpetuated by poverty, impacts health outcomes and infringes on the human rights of those affected. The interplay between stigma and mental health occurs on many levels and is self-reinforcing; often leading to further isolation and marginalisation. Discriminatory laws or practice that perpetuate stigma and discrimination can impact on public health by impeding access to health services, and foster tacit acceptance of domestic violence and hate crimes.
We support groups working to ensure that comprehensive, non-discriminatory SRHR services are available to everyone embracing diversity. It is important that groups affected by stigma and discrimination are involved in all aspects of the design and implementation of programming and advocacy seeking to challenge stigma and discrimination.